Why Some Think a Gold Standard Wouldn't Work

There is a lot of wailing and gnashing of teeth from Moron Keynesian Trash (MKT) about the brave Robert Zoellick, president of the World Bank, saying that what the world needs is a modified gold standard for currencies, which it does, in spades.

The Financial Times, long a champion for Keynesian stupidity despite constant inflation in prices, had an editorial from one of these MKT, who opines, “Could a gold standard help international currency co-ordination? In theory it could, if the state were willing to accept the restrictions on national monetary policy and the currency account adjustments that a gold standard entails.”

Did they say, “Willing to accept restrictions on national monetary policy”? Hahaha! What kind of crack is that? Is this guy actually saying that the only reasons that a gold standard would not work is because governments want no restrictions on creating and spending a lot of money, consequences be damned? Hahaha! Who knew?

Not content with that, the editorial goes on, “But if such political will can be found, there are better anchors than gold; until then, gold will not work.” That’s it! No explanation, no rationale, theory, no examples of “better anchors than gold,” no nothing! Just some preening know-nothing stating, “gold will not work”! Hahaha!

Jon Nadler at Kitco.com writes that “A case was made for a new anchor or ‘basket’ of currencies plus gold, and it was contained in a Financial Times piece written by World Bank President Robert Zoellick. His ideas were met with skepticism by gold market experts such as UBS analyst Edel Tully, who correctly stated that ‘Any reserve currency needs a supply that can grow as rapidly as global trade. Gold supply falls significantly short of that basic requirement.’“

Did he say, “correctly stated”? Wrong! Well, my first instinct is to laugh at such arrogance, since I never heard or read such a thing in my life, which I do thusly: Hahaha!

For one thing, any amount of gold will work perfectly, and for another thing, the world is awash in dollars and other countries printing their own money to absorb all those dollars flowing out into the world, an irresponsible and stupid result of not having a gold standard, and which has caused a lot of inflation, bubbles and economic misery.

And as for a “gold market expert” knowing anything about economics, which he obviously doesn’t, I will just dismiss him with a casual wave of my hand.

On the other hand (the one that is not waving) Charles Kadlec of the Economic Advisory Board of the American Principles Project, writing in The Wall Street Journal, correctly says that “guaranteeing a stable value for the dollar by restoring dollar-gold convertibility would be the surest way for the Federal Reserve to achieve its dual mandate of maximum employment and price stability.”

In fact, he goes on that “From 1947 through 1967, the year before the US began to weasel out of its commitment to dollar-gold convertibility, unemployment averaged only 4.7% and never rose above 7%,” which happily produced not only low unemployment, but that “low unemployment and high growth coincided with low inflation” along with low interest rates, as exemplified by AAA-rated corporate bonds averaging less than 4%, and which “never rose above 6%.”

And speaking of debt, I was intrigued with the title of the essay by James West, at midasletter.com, which was, “Buying $600 Billion in Debt with Debt,” which I had hoped was an instruction manual on how to make a lot of money, fast, using no money of my own, and (hopefully) without doing any work or taking any risk.

It was, alas, not a guidebook to instant and undeserved riches, but a criticism of the idiocy of the Federal Reserve and another stupid Quantitative Easing (QE2) plan of theirs to create a couple of trillion dollars or so in the next year, to buy a couple of trillion dollars or so of Treasury debt in the next year, so that the despicable Obama administration can deficit-spend a couple trillion dollars or so in the next year.

James West, writes, “Here is the glaring hole in the United States Federal Reserve’s approach to what it calls stimulus, and what history will one day categorize as fraud: You can’t use your own debt to purchase more debt when you can’t repay the original debt. The crime is compounded when you know you’re never going to repay the debt. It amounts to treason to intentionally destroy the integrity of the nation’s money.”

And how do they intend to get away with it? Easy! He explains, “The Federal Reserve’s ability to ‘purchase’ US Treasury Bills is completely dependent on the fact that there is no overseer above the Board of Governors of the US Federal Reserve to call an end to such self-destructive, immoral, and just plain criminal behavior.”

In short, Congress can stop them, but doesn’t!

In The Financial Times, Martin Feldstein writes, “The Federal Reserve’s proposed policy of quantitative easing is a dangerous gamble with only a small potential upside benefit and substantial risks of creating asset bubbles that could destabilise the global economy. Although the US economy is weak and the outlook uncertain, QE is not the right remedy.”

The reason is that “Under the label of QE, the Fed will buy long-term government bonds, perhaps one trillion dollars or more, adding an equal amount of cash to the economy and to banks’ excess reserves. Expectation of this has lowered long-term interest rates, depressed the dollar’s international value, bid up the price of commodities and farm land and raised share prices.” Inflation! There it is!

Even worse, The Wall Street Journal reports their “Number of the Week” is $10.2 trillion, which is, “How much the governments of the economically advanced nations will need to borrow in 2011.”

As for just us idiotic Americans who have elected the guys who allowed the Federal Reserve to destroy the dollar by monstrous over-issuance, the International Monetary Fund estimates that “The US will need to find about $4.2 trillion, 9% more than 2010 and equal to 28% of the country’s projected economic output in 2011.”

The good news is that buying gold, silver and oil now to fabulously capitalize on the horrific inflation in consumer prices that all of this quantitative easing madness will cause makes buying them such a no-brainer that “Whee! This investing stuff is easy!”

The Mogambo Guru
for The Daily Reckoning

The Daily Reckoning